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State Spotlight: Pennsylvania

Rear view of woman wearing sports clothing, arms raised looking at city

Find out why Pennsylvania is the perfect location for Travel Nurse champs!

This month’s State Spotlight takes us to phenomenal Pennsylvania! The Keystone State is loaded with exciting career opportunities for Travel Nurses as well as diverse terrain that includes farmland, forests, and mountains, historical cities, great food, and all kinds of fun stuff to do on your day off. Read on for some “major keys” on why Travel Nurse assignments in The Keystone State are amazing!        

Travel Nursing in Pennsylvania

State of Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania is a phenomenal state for Travel Nursing!

Pennsylvania offers a steady inventory of Travel Nursing jobs for you to choose from. These are great job opportunities at Traveler-friendly hospitals that let you beef up your resume and build your healthcare skills. Plus, The Keystone State is a gorgeous blend of city and country, with all kinds of exciting adventures to partake in on your days off. 

Pennsylvania is home to nearly 250 hospitals — 27 of which meet high enough standards to be ranked among U.S. News & World Report’s annual Best Hospitals list. That includes their #1-ranked Pennsylvania hospital, Philadelphia’s Hospitals of the University of Pennsylvania-Penn Presbyterian, which is nationally ranked in 11 specialties, in addition to being ranked “High Performing” in two more adult specialties and seven procedures/conditions. Rounding out the top five overall best hospitals in Pennsylvania are: Pittsburgh’s UPMC Presbyterian Shadyside, Philadelphia’s Jefferson Health-Thomas Jefferson University Hospitals, Hershey’s Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, and Allentown’s Lehigh Valley Hospital.    

U.S. News & World Report’s 2018 “Best States” list ranked Pennsylvania #38 overall, as well as #16 for opportunity and #23 for healthcare.

As for licensing, Pennsylvania is not a walk-through state, a compact state, or a NURSYS state. Click here for more info on licensing in Pennsylvania. 

Pennsylvania Fast Facts

Independence Hall of Philadelphia

Philadelphia is home to tons of U.S. history!

State Nickname: The Keystone State or The Quaker State

Capital: Harrisburg

Largest City: Philadelphia

National Parks: 19

State Parks: 111

National Historic and Natural Landmarks: 196

State Motto: “Virtue, liberty, and independence”

State Flower: Mountain Laurel

State Tree: Hemlock

State Animal: White-tailed Deer

State Dog: Great Dane

State insect: Firefly

Pennsylvania was the second state and one of the original 13 colonies.

For one season during World War II, the Philadelphia Eagles and Pittsburgh Steelers combined to become the Steagles!

The movie theater, Zippo lighters, the Slinky, bubblegum, Crayola crayons, bifocals, lightning rods, revolving doors, the smiley face emoticon, matchbooks, packaged condiments, pencils with attached erasers, the polio vaccine, odometers, gas stations, soda pop, Jeeps, the toilet paper roll, Choco Tacos, Monopoly, the Ferris Wheel, and even The United States of America were all invented in Pennsylvania!

Backpacking West Rim Trail Pennsylvania

Hike the beautiful West Rim Trail in Tioga State Park. The 30-mile trail overlooks Pine Creek Gorge and is considered the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon.

Pennsylvania was named in honor of William Penn’s dad, Admiral Sire William Penn, and the name means “Penn’s Woodland.”

Pennsylvania was famously once the seat of the federal government, from about 1776 to 1800.

Love them or hate them, Peeps are manufactured at Bethlehem, Pennsylvania’s Just Born Candy factory.

The first circulating library, The Library Company of Philadelphia, began in 1731. It was founded by Benjamin Franklin and partners.

Hershey, Pennsylvania is the Chocolate Capital of the U.S.

The world’s first commercial broadcast station, KDKA out of Pittsburgh, started daily broadcasts on November 2, 1920.

The United States’ first zoo was built in Philadelphia in 1876.

Betsy Ross created the first American flag in Philadelphia.

Pennsylvania is home to the highest concentration of Amish in the country.

Pennsylvania is the only original colony that is not bordered by the Atlantic Ocean.

The first daily newspaper was published in Pennsylvania in 1784.

Famous folks from Pennsylvania include Meek Mill, Mister Rogers, Louisa May Alcott, Arnold Palmer, Taylor Swift, Tina Fey, Kobe Bryant, Grace Kelly, Kevin Hart, Amber Rose, Joan Jett, Jim Croce, Bret Michaels, Gillian Jacobs, Amanda Seyfried, Mac Miller, Bob Saget, Christine Taylor, Jack Palance, Kate Gosselin, Seth Green, Gene Kelly, Jimmy Stewart, Betsy Ross, Noam Chomsky, Billie Holiday, Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes, Wilt Chamberlain, and Daniel Boone.      

Liberty Bell Detail

Crack goes the Liberty Bell!

Pennsylvania’s Indiana County has been dubbed the Christmas Tree Capital of the World.

Orefield, Pennsylvania is home to the oldest drive-in movie theater in the nation — Shankweiler’s Drive-In, which opened in 1934. 

Nazareth, Pennsylvania has been home to Martin Guitars since 1833. 

Hellam, Pennsylvania is home to the world’s largest shoe — which is also a house!

The first baseball stadium was built in 1909 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 

Harrisburg, Pennsylvania’s Rockville Bridge is the world’s longest stone arch bridge.

Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania is home to the all-knowing Punxsutawney Phil who gets his annual 15 minutes of fame each Groundhog Day, whether he sees his shadow or not!

James Buchanan was the only president to hail from Pennsylvania.

Kennett Square, Pennsylvania is the Mushroom Capital of the World.

The world’s first computer was used in Philadelphia in 1946.

To Do & See in Pennsylvania

Allegheny National Forest

Allegheny National Forest is just one of Pennsylvania’s gorgeous great outdoors spots.

The Keystone State has tons for Travelers to do and see. There are the calm rolling hills, dramatic mountains, and several city centers offering excitement and history. Pennsylvania is a truly phenomenal place for your next adventure in Travel Nursing!

On the urban tip, Pennsylvania’s largest cities include Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Allentown, and Erie. Each of these cities represents what makes Pennsylvania such a great place to live, work, and play — with various bits of unique history, scintillating sports, divine drinks and eats, and so much more.

Yo, Adrian! Philadelphia is so much more than just Rocky’s hometown. Pennsylvania’s largest city is a wonderful place to brush up on history. You can tour Independence Hall (the birthplace of the United States), check out the Liberty Bell, jog up the “Rocky steps” and pose with the bronze statue of Balboa at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, check out the many awesome museums on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, visit the vendors at Reading Terminal Market, explore South Philly’s Italian Market, kayak down the Schuylkill, and so much more!

Philly Cheesesteak Sandwich

The Keystone State is known for its famous Philly cheesesteaks and many other delicious eats!

You will, of course, want to snag a famous Philly Cheesesteak while in the city of brotherly love. Pat’s King of Steaks, Geno’s Steaks, Jim’s Steaks, Dalessandro’s Steaks and Hoagies, John’s Roast Pork, Steve’s Prince of Steaks, and Sonny’s Famous Steaks are some of the city’s best. (More on Pennsylvania food below!)

Some of the state’s other must-sees include Frank Lloyd Wright’s famous Fallingwater home south of Pittsburgh, Hershey’s Hersheypark — a chocolate-themed amusement park, Gettysburg National Military Park, Pittsburgh’s Andy Warhol Museum and Carnegie Museum of Natural History Museum, and more.

Pennsylvania is also home to rich rolling hills dotted with farms and some bucolic small towns that make great day trips, including New Hope, Lititz, Doylestown, Strasburg, Wellsboro, Mars, and Boiling Springs. These towns offer quaint scenery, rich heritage, fun activities, great food, and more.

Pennsylvania’s York County has been dubbed the Snack Food Capital of the World thanks to the many popular snack brands made there. But whether you just want a nibble or a more substantial nosh, Pennsylvania is known for some delicious eats.

Valley Forge Sunset

Beautiful sunset at Valley Forge National Park!

In addition to snacks from the likes of Utz, Snyder’s of Hanover, Herr’s, and others, Pennsylvania is known for its soft pretzels, pierogies, Whoopie pies, scrapple, Peeps, Hershey’s chocolate, Lebanon bologna, apple butter, Tastykake, dippy eggs, pot pie, Old Forge-Style pizza, Stromboli, wedding soup, red beet eggs, mushroom strudel, Shoofly pie, Primanti Bros. sandwiches,  and, of course, famous Philly cheesesteaks. Wash it all down with an ice-cold Arnold Palmer or Yuengling beer and you’ll be living like a true Pennsylvanian!

Sports fans will cheer for assignments in Pennsylvania as you’ll get the chance to root for the Philadelphia Phillies, Pittsburgh Pirates, Philadelphia Eagles, Philadelphia 76ers, Pittsburgh Steelers, Philadelphia Flyers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Philadelphia Union, and tons of other great pro, semi-pro and college teams.

For lovers of the great outdoors, Pennsylvania does not disappoint. The Keystone State is a great place to hike the Allegheny Mountains, bike the Great Allegheny Passage, kayak the Susquehanna River, ski the Poconos Mountains, beach it up on Lake Erie, explore the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon, and so much more.

Ready for your adventure to Pennsylvania?!

Search jobs now to find your dream Travel Nurse job in Pennsylvania!

About the Author

Hi, I'm Sarah Wengert, a creative content writer for the amazing Medical Solutions based in Omaha, Nebraska. While I'm not a Travel Nurse, I love to travel and I truly appreciate the hard, important work that nurses do. I'm very happy to represent a company that cares so much about its people. Thanks for reading!

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